UGANDA: GOVERNMENT TO PARTNER WITH MEDIA TO FIGHT CORRUPTION

KAMPALA, Sept 12 — In an effort to strengthen the fight against corruption, the Ugandan government promised to work closely with the media to fight the vice.

The directorate for ethics and iiintegrity, Office of the President, Moses Makumbi said government cannot fight corruption and promote moral values in isolation.

Speaking at the Uganda Media Union (UMU) Journalists’ training on “Investigative and Corruption Reporting” at Eureka hotel in Ntinda on Friday, Makumbi said the directorate is ready to empower society to uphold moral values and principles, and coordinate national efforts in the fight against corruption.

He said the directorate is already traversing the country disseminating and enlisting public support in the fight against corruption through the Anti-Corruption Public Private Partnership (ACPPP).

“The media has helped government in exposing this evil thus sparking off inquiries. We thank you for the good work and we think as partners, much needs to be done to fight the vice,” Makumbi said.

He said the media is the observer always looked at by the public, stressing it should always avoid speculations, but investigate issues thoroughly and come up with facts to pin the culprits.

“You need to be accurate to avoid losing trust and your integrity. Never allow to be compromised because things can turn against you,” he added.

Makumbi said corruption is a result of the breakdown of morals in society, saying the directorate has embarked on promoting moral values through schools and cultural institutions.

The President last year launched a National Ethical Values Policy with 10 moral values to be disseminated among the communities to create a social change.

“This will also be a willing ally in the fight against corruption,” Makumbi said.

The chairman, Kenya Correspondents’ Association, William Oloo Janak asked journalists to follow ethics while gathering information to avoid getting problems.

“Some journalists are compromised and this has greatly jeopardized investigative journalism,” he said.

Janak also advised journalists and media owners to work closely with the union to easily address the emerging challenges in the industry.

Ikebesi Omoding, chairman UMU, said division among journalists in the country has greatly ruined efforts to fight for their freedoms.
“We have so many journalists groups. They have no single platform and that’s why sometimes you find it hard to fight for people who are not registered members,” Omoding said.

He also noted that the poor remuneration of journalists by some media houses has greatly affected the quality of journalism in the country.

Abdallah Halima, one of the facilitators, said Media houses need to give enough support to their investigative journalists to get good stories.

“Lack of support will always lead to a bad story. That’s why many stories remain with many gaps,” she noted.

SOURCE: NEW VISION

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